Space X launched the Starship unmanned spacecraft with a successful launch but failed on Saturday in space minutes after takeoff, in a second test after his first attempt to reach space ended in an explosion.
The two-stage rocket took off from Elon Musk's company's Starbase launch site near Boca Chica, Texas, and it rose about 90 kilometers above the ground on a planned 90-minute flight into space.
But the first stage of the Super Heavy rocket, although it appeared to have accomplished a crucial maneuver to separate from its core stage, It exploded over the Gulf of Mexico shortly after breaking off.
Meanwhile, Starship's central rocket continued to advance towards space, but 10 minutes into the flight a company announcer said that Space He had suddenly lost contact with the vehicle.
"We have lost the data from the second stage (...) We believe we have lost the second stage," said John Insprucker, host of the SpaceX live broadcast.
The launch was the second attempt to fly the Starship mounted on the imposing Super Heavy rocket, after an attempt in April that It ended in failure about four minutes after takeoff.
A SpaceX live webcast of Saturday's launch showed how andThe rocket rose from the launch tower into the sky morning as the Super Heavy's cluster of powerful Raptor engines came to life.
The primary goal of the test flight was to lift off the Starship and deliver it into space just short of Earth orbit. This would have been a key step towards Space X's ambition to produce a large spacecraft multipurpose capable of sending people and cargo to the Moon later this decade for NASA and, ultimately, to Mars.
Musk, founder, CEO and chief engineer of SpaceX, also believes that Starship will eventually replace the Falcon 9 rocket as the centerpiece of his launch business, which already takes him to space. most of the world's satellites and other commercial payloads.
NASA, SpaceX's main customer, has a considerable interest in the success of the Starship, which the US space agency is counting on to play a central role in its Artemis manned spaceflight program, successor to the Apollo missions of more than half a year ago. century that They took astronauts to the Moon for the first time.
The objective of the mission was to launch the Starship in Texas and take it into space, close to reaching orbit, and then plunge through the Earth's atmosphere and land off the coast of Hawaii. The launch was scheduled for Friday, but was delayed a day due to a last-minute change to the flight control hardware.